I now rent out my house. Do I need to tell the insurance company?
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UPDATED: Sep 15, 2020
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If you have a homeowners policy, it means you are living in the home. If the home is now rented to someone else because of your divorce, you need to amend your insurance to a rental dwelling policy. This covers the home to reflect the different insurance exposures for rental property. You need to talk to your insurance agent and let him know the home is now rented. The agent may want a copy of the lease agreement.
You also need to let your agent know if it is being rented furnished, and if so, you need to be sure you properly insure those items. However, any furnishings in the rented home will not be covered for theft. You need to be sure you have enough insurance if the home cannot be occupied due to a covered loss (fire, vandalism, etc). This is called loss of rents. It is often included in a rental policy, but be sure the amount of protection is sufficient to protect you if the home becomes uninhabitable due to a fire or other loss.
You should also be sure you have proper liability protection for the new liability exposure, such as libel, slander or wrongful eviction, also known as personal injury. This is relatively inexpensive but well worth it now that you are a landlord.